Leadership change announced at FloridaWest Economic Development Alliance

Posted on February 10, 2023 by Staff reports

After more than 11 years leading the charge of economic development with Greater Pensacola Chamber and FloridaWest Economic Development Alliance, Scott Luth announced he is stepping down as CEO. Luth told the board of directors he is ready for a new challenge.

“When I first came to Pensacola, I saw a lot of opportunity to grow the region,” said Luth. “First with the Chamber and then FloridaWest — I knew with the right team we could make a difference, and we did.”

Big wins for Pensacola include the creation/retention of more than 8,000 jobs since 2014, and in just the past year, $38.6 million in capital investment that turned into a business development economic impact of $114 million and $24 million in earnings from 309 jobs. In addition, since 2014, FloridaWest worked to secure multiple grants totaling $150 million under Luth’s leadership.

“I’m so proud of our team and what we’ve accomplished,” said Luth. “We finished our 5-year strategic plan in 4 years and have helped companies like Navy Federal, ST Engineering, Pegasus Labs and Paradigm Parachute grow, add jobs and invest in our region. We have worked tirelessly to better Pensacola and Escambia County for those who live and work here. Now I feel the time is right to look for my next opportunity,” said Luth.

Luth has agreed to stay on for the next four months to ensure a smooth transition.

“We thank Scott for his years of service to the region and we wish him well,” said FloridaWest Economic Development Alliance board chair, Rick Byars. “We’ll begin a search right away and I’m grateful Scott will stay on for a bit to help with the transition.”

Escambia County Commissioner Lumon May praised Luth and his team’s hard work to compete with other regions to recruit new businesses.

“Economic Development is highly competitive and Scott and his team know what it takes to lure business to Pensacola and we have the track record to show it,” said May. “I’m proud of the work they’ve done and pledge to support the organization as they transition.”

Former Mayor Ashton Hayward and Luth worked very closely on many pivotal projects for Pensacola.

“Scott and his team were great partners during my time as Mayor,” said Hayward. “We had the same important goal — strategically grow Pensacola by recruiting business, growing what was already here at home and encouraging entrepreneurship. Scott has a great legacy.”